Winter’s Bone Chapters 31-33 Summary & Analysis

Daniel Woodrell

Winter’s Bone

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Winter’s Bone Chapters 31-33 Summary & Analysis

Chapter 31

Ree lies in bed for the afternoon as another winter storm blows in. The boys come home from school, excited about more snow days. Ree ruminates over the benefits of the two kinds of pills she had taken that day, noting that while one left her brain active, the other dulled her senses. Ree thinks to herself that sometimes one wants their mind active and “dancing,” other times having ones’ feelings dulled can be a relief. As the snow continues to fall, Ree takes another blue pill that numbs her mind.

Chapter 32

Ree’s consciousness dips in and out, and she realizes that she is sitting in Teardrop’s truck with him. As Ree struggles to regain awareness, Teardrop informs her that he is tired of waiting for retaliation by the Hawkfall clan; he plans on acting first to gauge their reaction. Teardrop reveals his plan to take her to Buster Leroy’s house, and for the remaining drive Ree falls into a whiskey and pill-induced sleep.

Again, struggling for consciousness, Ree realizes they have arrived at a gas station where Teardrop speaks to Buster Leroy and two women. The two women—Kitty Thurtell and Jean Dolly—approach Ree and sympathize over her injuries. Jean alludes to the Hawkfall women’s actions as cowardly, at which point Kitty tells her to speak such thoughts quietly, even if they were truthful. They leave, and Ree returns to sleep.

Awakening, Ree goes in search for Teardrop in a nearby tavern. She finds him speaking to a bartender about her injuries, and she continues to sit and drink whiskey in disregard of the bartender’s warning that her presence might cause undue attention from the other men. Ree begins to feel nauseated and leaves the bar, with Teardrop following her. As they drive away, Ree vomits. Teardrop, who is currently sleep-deprived and strung out on meth, suddenly stops the vehicle and turns around to return to the bar after deciding that he did not like the way the bartender said something to him. Once back at the tavern, Teardrop takes an ax from his truck, found the right sedan, and slams…

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